I have spent the last 6 months working the L.E.K. Paris office on my second swap after a 3-month stint in Shanghai. After my first swap, I was eager to get back out on the road and see what L.E.K. Europe had to offer.
Overall working and living in Paris has been amazing. I moved into my swap Leonore’s flat in the 7th arrondissement right in the heart of Paris. She was great about getting me settled in, giving me recommendations, and introducing me to her friends in the office – I even spent a weekend with her family down in the South of France!
In the office, I have worked primarily on transport and industrials projects, including a lengthy strategy case for a French rail conglomerate.
Like my time in China, I’ve felt that L.E.K. Paris has a good mix of similarities and differences to the work in the U.S. The majority of the output is in English, but some client interactions are in French. After a nasty winter, all the staff has been embracing the warmth and the sun, dining out for lunch regularly. Unlike the LA office which has one new snazzy espresso machine, the Paris office only drinks espresso (no drip coffee) and mostly Perrier. The staff speak French, English, and typically 1-2 other languages. Moreover, the office has a really awesome informal social culture, planning tons of fun happy hours, weekend football games, and spontaneous nights out, making my transition as the only swap (and non-French speaker) pretty seamless.
Paris is an amazing city with some of the most incredible and classic sites in the world. Seeing the Arc de Triomphe on the walk to work or catching a glimpse of the Eiffel Tower from one of the conference rooms never gets old.
The city is also well-connected to other parts of Europe via high speed train, making access to the beach, the Alps, and other cities like London, Brussels, and Geneva easy for quick weekenders and vacation with the rest of the L.E.K. Europe swap crew. In the last few months I’ve snowboarded by the Matterhorn in Switzerland, toured the French Riviera, ate my way through Lyon (France’s famed food capital), and hiked out by the Austrian Alps.
I had only briefly been to Paris before my swap and am now bummed that my swap is so close to ending! My Paris swap has been an incredible period of my time at L.E.K. and I highly encourage you to participate and see what this office has to offer!